Pungent and invigorating, our Spaghetti Puttanesca uses classic Italian pantry ingredients such as tomatoes, black olives, capers, onions, garlic, basil, and anchovies and packs a punch.
How to Make Spaghettia alla Puttanesca
Ingredients you will need
Spaghetti, olive oil, shallots, garlic, black olives, anchovies (optional), capers, red pepper flakes, San Marzano tomatoes, Parmigiano Reggiano, Basil
Boil the Water
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Ensure there is enough salt to flavour the spaghetti, when you test the water, it should taste like the sea.
Start the Puttanesca Sauce
While you're waiting on the water to boil, heat a good splash of olive oil on medium heat. Add and sauté a diced shallot, 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of capers, and 2 anchovy fillets (optional) until softened and the anchovies melted. Add the garlic and cook an additional minute, just to release the flavour. Pour in a 28 oz (796 ml) can of San Marzano tomatoes (we prefer D.O.P variety) and crush them with the back of a spoon or your hands, if you're feeling brave. Crank the heat up to medium-high and boil the sauce for 10 minutes, until it thickens.
Cook the Noodles
After the sauce has reduced, add 1 pound (450 g) of spaghetti, fettuccine, or linguine to the pot of boiling water. Cook until al dente, usually about 8 to 10 minutes for dry pasta and 4 to 6 minutes for fresh.
Turn it into Spaghetti all Puttanesca
Now that the noodles are cooking, the puttanesca sauce can be finished. Add ¾ cup (135 g) of pitted black olives, 2 tablespoon (30 ml) of capers, and 1 teaspoon (5 ml) of spicy red pepper flakes. Give it a good stir and lower the heat to simmer until the spaghetti is done. Taste the sauce and season with salt or additional pepper flakes, if necessary.
Make it Beautiful
Once the noodles have finished cooking, draining the water, reserving half a cup and dump the noodles into the sauce. Use a pair of tongs to toss the spaghetti with the sauce and add a splash of the pasta water if the sauce needs to be a little thinner, then toss in a big handful of Parm.
With the tongs, grab a big potion of the spaghetti and twirl it around on the base of a serving spoon. Carefully lay it in the centre of a pasta bowl, gently releasing while twirling so the spaghetti forms a nest. Spoon some sauce form the bottom of the pot and lay on top of the spaghetti. Top with a generous sprinkling of Parm and some whole or chopped basil leaves.
- 3 tablespoon olive oil extra virgin
- 1 small shallot thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoon capers
- 2 anchovy fillets
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 can tomatoes San Marzano tomatoes (we prefer D.O.P variety)
- 1 lb spaghetti
- ¾ cup olives pitted and chopped
- 1 teaspoon chili flakes
- sea salt
- 1 cup Parmigiano Reggiano freshly grated
- ¼ cup basil leaves
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
- Meanwhile, in a large sauté pan heat olive oil on medium-high heat. Add the shallots, capers and anchovies and cook stirring occasionally, until shallots are softened and anchovies melted. Add garlic and stir for 1 minute. Pour in the tomatoes, breaking them up with the back of a spoon. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and reduce for 10 minutes.
- Add the pasta to the water and cook until al dente.
- While pasta is cooking, add the olives and chili flakes to the tomato sauce and stir to combine. Continue to cook until thickened. Taste for seasoning and adjust as necessary.
- When the pasta is done, strain and reserve about ½ cup of pasta water. Stir the spaghetti into the puttanesca sauce. Add pasta water if necessary to loosen the sauce, then stir in ½ cup of the Parmigiano and half the basil leaves. Serve immediately, topping with additional Parm and basil.